The Mobile Motivation: How to Hook your ELearners through their Mobile Devices
Come to think of it, the only entertainment and educational applications that make it to the “most frequented” applications are the ones that are compatible with the mobile devices. ELearning program stat are mobile friendly have a greater completion and participation rate as compared to programs that don’t run on mobile devices. In this article, we will share a few tips on how to create mobile-friendly eLearning programs.
Have you ever been engaged in a mobile course and reveled every minute of it? Have you wondered what exactly made the mobile learning experience so enjoyable? Was it the content? But the content is the same anywhere! Was it the colors? But colors are viewed correctly regardless of the device! Was it the images? But image-viewing experience determined by the file size and format! Allow us to share with you some best practices in developing mobile-friendly courses that will hook your eLearners from the start to the end.
When you think of mobile devices, the following may color your imagination: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, BlackBerry or webOS. Regardless of the variety of the mobile devices available in the market, the technique to create eLearning courses for all of them is the same. Watch out for these factors that distinguish mobile learning from laptop-based learning:
- Mobile devices have much smaller displays than desktop computers. Know that your eLearning environment will be very different on a mobile device and size varies from one device to another.
- Mobile data network speeds are slower than a wifi on a laptop. Be mindful of the content volume and image sized when developing eLearning courses. They will take longer to download on a mobile device.
- Use a larger text font to avoid learners zooming in an out frequently. Bear in mind that zooming in and out on a desktop is easier than on a mobile device. .
- To be “safe” try limiting your file formats to these: .DOC or .DOCX .PDF .PPT .JPG, .GIF, .PNG (for images)
- The following media formats are desirable for mobile devices. The last thing you want is the learner downloading a supporting app each time they use your course:
- Audio: Use MP3 file format. Use128kbps audio quality. Limit the length to five minutes.
- Video: Use MP4 file format. Use the following suggested video dimensions: 480x320 is recommended for the iPhone. 640x480 is recommended for the iPad.
- Blogs, Journals, Wikis & Discussions: Owing to the real-time capacity of mobile devices to capture media while on the job or while observing a process, collaboration is more meaningful and satisfying. For example, you may have culinary art students taking pictures of their latest creation in their kitchen and uploading for their peers to comment. Similarly, you may have a photography class that has an even more exciting discussion on images taken while travelling. Sometimes, we learn a new concept or a vocabulary word in the most unexpected places. With the mobile device with us, we are able to update our Wikis before we forget. The possibilities are endless with mobile devices as eLearning catalysts.
Mobile learning is rapidly earning respect and preference in the eLearning arena. While eLearning courses are not designed exclusively for mobile devices, these above steps are a “neutral” approach in developing eLearning programs. This means that they work well regardless of the viewing device. By being mindful about what works in a mobile learning environment, training developers can motivate learners to complete trainings beyond their homes and offices. Do tell us about your personal mobile learning experiences and needs using the Contact Us form.